Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Metastatic Breast Cancer Day

Today, October 17, is Metastatic Breast Cancer Day. Only one day out of the whole month of Pinktober is dedicated to metastatic breast cancer, which is technically, the only breast cancer that kills women. If you die because of breast cancer, then you die from breast cancer that has turned metastatic.

Metastatic Breast Cancer is what took Susan in February. Metastatic Breast Cancer still needs awareness, I think. So today, and every October 17 from now on, I'm going to send you back to her blog to read this:

"I am a woman with metastatic breast cancer.  My cancer was first detected as inflammatory breast cancer nearly 4.5 years ago, although I’ve also had invasive breast cancer, Paget’s disease, and recurrences as the cancer spread to lymph nodes under my left arm (2010), to lymph nodes in the center of my chest (New Year’s 2011), and then to my bones in March 2011.
Metastatic breast cancer means that cancer cells have spread from my right breast to other sites, made themselves at home, and reproduced so many times that now each cell has become a mass of cells detectable by today’s x-rays, CT scans, PET scans, and MRIs.  I have those tests frequently now, to determine how well my current treatment is proceeding, whether the cancer is progressing or held at bay, and when we should change treatments to something that might be more effective.  Last week’s tests and scans showed that there is still cancer in my neck, spine, ribs, and hips.  The blood tests had been showing a reduction in the total load of cancer cells in my body, but as the numbers slowed to a standstill, they agreed with the increasing pain in my hips, left ribs, and neck, one that agrees with the scans; we will have to change treatments."

Please. Please click over and read the rest of Susan's post at her blog, Toddler Planet.


  1. Marty, I found you through Susan, and found her b/c I was curious about a blog named ToddlerPlanet (saw it on someone else's blogroll) - once I started reading I was hooked.
    About a year ago, I sent this to Susan:
    She was hopeful about this research (I stumbled on it)
    I am going to send that link now to Liz Szabo - the USAToday reporter - I just sent you a link via Twitter to her story on IBC. Here it is again:
    Hope to meet you someday! I live in northern VA, and my daughter is in Durham...

  2. Yes, this is the only breast cancer that actually kills.

  3. Anonymous1:16 AM

    "All that survives after our death are publications and people.

    So look carefully after the words you write, the thoughts and publications you create, and how you love others. For these are the only things that will remain."

    -- Toddler Planet

    She wrote and loved so well, with strength and courage beyond all expression. Thank you, Susan.

  4. One of my favorite things about Susan is how she boiled an issue down to its heart so easily. I remember asking her for advice on a couple of things that seemed quite complicated to me. Her answer immediately boiled the issue down to the only thing that mattered. She does it in the post you link to as well.

  5. Doctors generally treat cancer of the gallbladder that has come back (recurred) in the same way as stage 3 or 4 gallbladder cancer. But your treatment will depend on whether you have had radiotherapy or surgery in the past. And on where your cancer has come back. There is a maximum amount of radiotherapy that you can have to any one part of your body. If you have too much it can cause damage to healthy body tissues. So if you have had radiotherapy before, you may not be able to have it again. Gallbladder Cancer Symptoms